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Electric hand dryer association concerns over EU EcoDesign Directive
The electric hand dryer Association, the official body that represents the global hand dryer industry, has shared its concerns over the potential legislative measures resulting from the EcoDesign Directive, when it comes to energy efficiency and labelling.
The eHA says that certain measures would impose pressure on the SME-structured industry, leading to 'false developments'.
In October, the 'Eco-design and energy labelling preparatory study on hand dryers' final report was published. This study recommends certain measures are taken to reach the energy efficiency targets set by the European Commission.
However, the study failed to include a number of additional factors which are crucial to effectively assess the impact on industry and consumer, says the eHa. These include:
- Environmental considerations of hand dryers
- Substitute products (notably paper towels)
- Consumer behaviour
- Resulting economic and environmental impact on the electric hand dryer industry
- Projected energy efficiency gains of the potential measures
- Reducing GHG emissions is an important goal
The eHA welcomes the efforts of the EC in encouraging more products to address climate change and reduce energy usage while arguing that greenhouse gas emissions and electric warm air hand dryers contribute in several ways towards reaching these targets.
For example, electric hand dryers use significantly less energy than is needed to produce or recycle paper towels. They also avoid indirect environmental consequences, such as the spread of diseases deriving from used paper, reducing further GHG emissions, such as methane from landfills, and reducing water pollution due to the fact that reprocessing fresh water is very energy intensive.
"The hand dryer industry has a strong interest in ongoing product improvement and innovation," says Milagros Garde, manager at Mediclinics and chair of the eHA Lobbying Committee. "However, the real costs - especially environmental costs - need to be considered by examining and comparing two completely different systems that serve as substitute products for each other - hand dryers and paper towels."
10th December 2020